See more synonyms for seizure on
  1. the act or an instance of seizing.
  2. the state of being seized.
  3. a taking possession of an item, property, or person legally or by force.
  4. a sudden attack, as of epilepsy or some other disease.

Origin of seizure

First recorded in 1475–85; seize + -ure
Related formsnon·sei·zure, nounre·sei·zure, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for seizure

Contemporary Examples of seizure

Historical Examples of seizure

  • Bohun was speechless for a moment, stricken dumb by a second seizure of fury.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • Lady Coryston lived for some eight months after this seizure.

    The Coryston Family

    Mrs. Humphry Ward

  • Then Miss Colton told him of her father's seizure and gave him the note for you.

    The Rise of Roscoe Paine

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • This seizure isn't alarming and there is absolutely no danger of contagion.


    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • But this first seizure was not so severe as to put a final arrest on his activities.

    The Scottish Reformation

    Alexander F. Mitchell

British Dictionary definitions for seizure


  1. the act or an instance of seizing or the state of being seized
  2. pathol a sudden manifestation or recurrence of a disease, such as an epileptic convulsion
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for seizure

"act of seizing," late 15c., from seize + -ure. Meaning "sudden attack of illness" is attested from 1779.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

seizure in Medicine


  1. A paroxysmal episode, caused by abnormal electrical conduction in the brain, resulting in the abrupt onset of transient neurologic symptoms such as involuntary muscle movements, sensory disturbances and altered consciousness.convulsion
  2. A sudden attack, as of a disease.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

seizure in Science


  1. A sudden episode of transient neurologic symptoms such as involuntary muscle movements, sensory disturbances and altered consciousness. A seizure is caused by abnormal electrical activity in the brain, which is often diagnosed on an electroencephalogram. See also epilepsy.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.